We are developing the social individualist meta-context for the future. From the very serious to the extremely frivolous... lets see what is on the mind of the Samizdata people.

Samizdata, derived from Samizdat /n. - a system of clandestine publication of banned literature in the USSR [Russ.,= self-publishing house]

A third of COVID survivors suffer neurological or mental disorders… really?

How many people do you know who have had covid-19? I know eleven in total (including myself and three relatives), all ‘survivors’. Eleven is a very small statistical sample, but if one third of covid-19 ‘survivors’ suffer neurological or mental disorders, I would expect to know at least one person thus afflicted, which I do not. One third is really a lot of people.

What are the experiences of others?

Is this just yet another contrived pile of steaming bullshit produced by one of the ‘nudge’ units (to add to all the others that quickly vanish down the memory hole when falsified), or is my sample just too small to see the wider picture?

Ideas are more powerful than armies – a tribute to Brian Micklethwait

I have often disagreed with Steve Baker as of late, but I must say this is good to see.

Argentine leader Alberto Fernandez tests positive for the coronavirus…

Reuters tell us that Argentine leader Alberto Fernandez says he tests positive for the coronavirus

He is white, male, 62 years old and he says he is in good health. He is the national leader, so presumably lives in a nice post code. Sounds like he has exactly the same risk profile as me (well, other than the national leader bit. If I was the UK’s national leader, there would scarcely be an unoccupied lamppost in Westminster).

So, using the Oxford University Covid-19 risk calculator, what chance does Alberto Fernandez have of snuffing it? Presumably the same as me if I get infected; which I did in March 2020 (spoiler – I am not posting this via Ouija board from beyond. Two weeks in bed, ten days more to get smell and taste back, done.). Therefore, unless he is telling porkies about being in otherwise good health:

(a) Absolute risk = 0.0256% 1 in 3,906

(b) Absolute risk with no risk factors = 0.0227% 1 in 4,405

In other words, I do not give a damn that the leader of Argentina has covid-19, and frankly neither should Alberto Fernandez. The only thing newsworthy about this article is that the utter scrotes who run Reuters want you to think this is newsworthy.

I urge everyone to use the Oxford University Covid-19 risk calculator and share your figures. Get your friends, family, co-workers, neighbours, even your enemies, to do likewise. Maybe, just maybe, your enemy will figure out you are not the one they should be annoyed at after all.

Get an informed idea if you are meaningfully at risk. And if you are, then you absolutely should isolate, protect yourself and take this seriously.

But if not, and you do not live with anyone who is seriously at risk… protest, argue, be difficult, make people demanding compliance work hard to force your compliance, organise covid speakeasy gatherings, send money to support Lockdown Sceptics and their ilk. Do something, almost anything is better than nothing, even if all you do is make it unmistakably clear that you are only complying due to coercion, in spite of thinking this whole thing is utter madness. And say it every time. Ask people if they have spent 60 seconds of their time to use the risk calculator, and if not, why not?

Throw a brick through the Overton window. Stand the fuck up for yourself.

The UGLY truth about the Covid-19 lockdowns – Part 2

And while you are still in Covid-19(84) mode, if you have not run your details though the Oxford University Covid-19 risk calculator, now would be a good time to do so and to share that link with others.

Update: I have asked PANDA to repost the videos on Vimeo, Odysee & BitChute now that the utterly toxic YouTube has removed them.

Update 2: Screw YouTube, the original video now reposted from Vimeo. It is also on Odysee. Will repost this one (Part 2) when it is also available again. (Update 2a: Vimeo also deleted it, reposted via Odysee).

Update 3: BitChute to the rescue! Part 2 reposted.

The ugly truth about the Covid-19 lockdowns

I strongly recommend this reality check in which no punches are pulled. A very good use of 27 minutes of your time, so please share this with others.

Update: reposted from Vimeo after toxic YouTube removed the video. Also available on Odysee.

Update 2: and to hell with Vimeo as well as they also removed the video. Reposted from Odysee.

Just a reminder… what are your risk figures for Covid-19(84)

Just to point people back at an earlier samizdata article… I urge people to not only see what their risk estimate is, please also share that link with as many others as possible, so they too can get some idea of the true magnitude of what has underpinned the last year of state action, i.e. shutting down civil society.

So remember, it does not matter how many people get infected, it only matters who gets infected, because this is a very discriminating disease.

Addendum: some perspective from Germany.

Samizdata quote of the day

We have so far “spent”, ie borrowed £410 billion to pay for the lockdown policy which was meant to “save the NHS”. Would anyone have agreed to that if they had known the cost? Vulnerable people could have been given a pension to stay at home and supplied by Ocado at a tiny fraction of the cost. We have shut down our society for the sake of a disease with a survival rate of over 99.5%. That is just decadent.


This is the cause to rally around now

I want to ‘build back better’. I don’t know what the world leaders and international organisations are calling for when they parrot this phrase. But after the pandemic, we need far more critical thinking, rationality and constitutional protections. As soon as our liberties are restored, we must make sure they can never be taken away again. That is the cause to rally around now.

Laura Dodsworth

So what is your Covid-19(84) risk calculation?

This interesting Oxford University Covid risk calculator produces number that do not surprise me at all.

This is what my results were (COVID associated death):

(a) Absolute risk = 0.0256% 1 in 3906

(b) Absolute risk with no risk factors = 0.0227% 1 in 4405

Relative risk (a/b) = 1.1278

I had Covid-19 in March 2020 & recovered in two weeks (plus a couple weeks more until taste and smell fully recovered).

I wonder how long it will take for this risk calculator to be taken down, as I suspect it will make many people very angry at those in authority who have intentionally terrified them regarding this disease.

Statists of the world unite!

Monbiot sounds like a cross between Chairman Mao and a 17th century Puritan, banning anything that doesn’t fit his world view. The really weird thing is that the authoritarian Left are making alliances with authoritarian Right. The above-mentioned covidfaq website is run by Sam Bowman who used to take his shilling from the right-leaning Adam Smith Institute, one of the many so-called “think tanks” out there. At this point it’s worth mentioning – in line with documentary maker Adam Curtis – that think tanks don’t actually do any thinking. They are in effect PR operations for ideologies. And were previously sworn enemies of the Masons and Monbiots of this world.

In a similar vein, Mason has called for Boris Johnson to silence (or at least mock) the dissidents. He tweeted: “I don’t just want Johnson to say “Stay home, save lives” etc. I want him to call out and ridicule the bull**** anti-maskers, lockdown skeptics and denialists in his own party – and order social media platforms to suppress/label Covid disinformation. That’s leadership.”

No Paul, that’s tyranny. As I said, it’s sad to see a formerly radical thinker abjectly submitting to authority in this way. And we’re perhaps lucky that, for all his faults, Boris is not actually a tyrant; at least, not yet. The problem for the Left is that it’s been the contrarian Tories like Toby Young and James Delingpole who have led the questioning of government policy on lockdowns. So, almost instinctively, people like Mason recoil against lockdown scepticism simply because Young, Delingpole and their shock-jock ilk are lockdown sceptics.

Tom Hodgkinson

Hodgkinson is a left-statist with a tenuous grip on economic reality and an equally poor grasp of the inevitable civil liberties implications of his world view. Nevertheless, as many on my side of the fence have long known, one should never just read people you always agree with. We are far more likely to have read Communist Manifesto, Capital, Mao’s Little Red Book, Revolt against the Modern World etc. than the other side is to have read Fatal Conceit, Human Action or Wealth of Nations.

The linked article makes many good points, and he is certainly on-the-money about Sam Bowman, who was always an authoritarian; I think the ASI is well shot of him. In a similar vein, I need to also write an article about the not unrelated reason I also stopped giving a token monthly pittance to the Institute of Economic Affairs. These days I give substantially more to Lockdown Sceptics than I ever did to the IEA.

But I think the “touchingly naïve disappointment” also applies to Hodgkinson, who failed to see long ago that George Monbiot and Paul Mason were always up the Orwellian INGSOC end of the political spectrum. In many ways Monbiot and Mason are just more consistently applying the ideology they share with Hodgkinson.

But hey, if Hodgkinson and his ilk are starting to see the light, the war we are well and truly in today is such I for one care little who is in the trench next to me, just so long as they are pointing their weapon of choice at the enemies we share. A great many things are realigning on oh so many levels.

Samizdata quote of the day

The Scottish Crown Office subsequently wrote to us on March 5th demanding we remove the article. Guido decided to ignore it as it seemed unlikely to prejudice matters or reveal witnesses. The Spectator has taken the same approach to the same letter.

Guido Fawkes

Samizdata quote of the day

Interviewer: It is striking how scientific studies, also in this corona crisis, reveal very diverse results. Based on these results, scientists can defend almost diametrically opposed theories as the only truth. How is this possible?

Mattias Desmet: The research on corona is indeed brimming with contradictions. For example, regarding the effectiveness of face masks or hydroxychloroquine, the success of the Swedish approach, or the effectiveness of the PCR test. Even more curiously, the studies contain a huge number of improbable errors that a normally sane person would not be expected to make. This is still the case in terms of establishing the absolute number of infections, while a schoolchild knows that this means nothing as long as the number of infections detected is not compared with the number of tests taken. Obviously, the more tests you carry out, the more likely your infection rate will increase. Is this so difficult? In addition, it should be kept in mind that the PCR test can yield a large number of false positives, because the technique is widely misused for diagnosis. Together, this means that the inaccuracy of the figures distributed daily by the media is so great that some people understandably suspect a conspiracy, albeit apocryphally, in my opinion.

Again, this phenomenon is better placed in an historical perspective, because the problematic quality of scientific research is not a new issue. In 2005 the so-called “replication crisis” erupted in the sciences. Several committees set up to investigate scientific fraud cases found that scientific research is teeming with errors. Often the stated conclusions are of very dubious value. In the wake of the crisis, several papers appeared with titles that leave little to the imagination. In 2005, John Ioannidis, Professor of Medical Statistics at Stanford, published Why most published research findings are false. In 2016, a different research group wrote about the same topic, in Reproducibility: a Tragedy of Errors published in the medical journal Nature. These are just two examples of the very extensive literature describing this problem. I myself am well aware of the shaky scientific foundation of many research results. In addition to my master’s degree in clinical psychology, I earned a master’s in statistics. My doctorate dealt with measurement problems in the field of psychology.

– Patrick Dewals: The Emerging Totalitarian Dystopia: An Interview With Professor Mattias Desmet

Original text here.